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Woman who allegedly overdosed with kids in car charged with endangerment

| Thursday, May 16, 2013, 8:18 p.m.

A Fayette County woman who overdosed on suspected heroin in her vehicle as her children sat strapped in a car seat behind her is charged with child endangerment, police said.

Clara Bass, 34, of 6 Long St., Uledi, is charged by Uniontown police with two counts of child endangerment and one count of possession of drug paraphernalia.

Lt. Tom Kolencik said he went to the parking lot of the Uniontown Shopping Center on Morgantown Road at 6:40 p.m. Wednesday for a report of a woman in cardiac arrest.

He found Bass unconscious in the vehicle and began to pull her out with the intention of starting CPR.

“As I did so, a syringe fell from her arm,” Kolencik said.

Kolencik said he suspected the woman had overdosed on heroin.

Kolencik said two of Bass' children, ages 2 and 4, were in child seats in the back of the vehicle.

“They were surprisingly calm,” Kolencik said. “The 4-year-old did ask, ‘Is my mother breathing yet?' ”

Bass was given a shot of Narcan at the scene by medics. Kolencik said Narcan is used to revive individuals who have overdosed on heroin and other narcotics.

In the ambulance on the way to Uniontown Hospital, Bass asked about her children, Kolencik said.

Police called the children's fathers, who took custody.

Fayette County Children and Youth Services was notified, but the children are expected to remain with their fathers for now, Kolencik said.

Bass was treated at the hospital and released. Charges were filed with Uniontown District Judge Michael Metros.

Liz Zemba is a reporter for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-601-2166 or lzemba@tribweb.com.

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